Friday, October 18, 2013

The Revival We Need

These are the days where praying for revival has all but vanished. Many of my reformed brethren do not even believe in revival. And the church is so comfortable a revival would rock the boat and may result in self denial and sacrifice so our natural instincts are to avoid it or say God can bring it if He so desires. That is the easy way to avoid any spiritual responsibility or have to examine our prayer lives. We can read about several revivals where thousands were swept into the kingdom of God because the church was led to a deep repentance and sought the Lord with all of their hearts. But since we see nothing of the sort today we have stripped God of His power but we are blind to the real problem which is US.

But can you image a greater need for revival in the church than exists today? The church is consumed with the culture and what we can have and achieve within this culture of death. We lay our heads down at night with no conviction and without any pathos for a world hurtling toward a Christless eternity. How can we suggest we are following Jesus when our hearts are so very cold? Please do not suggest that the back and forth trips on Sunday mornings indicate passion for Christ. But here we are, imprisoned by the material temptations and the sensual allurements of this dark world and yet we still go through the motions without even asking “Where is the Lord God of Elijah?”

Is this all there is? Is this what satisfies our souls? Do the daily grinds and the redundant ecclesiastical obligations provide the conduit which manifests the revelation of the Risen Christ to a lost and needy world? Can we honestly say before God that the treasure of Christ is illuminating these earthen vessels so that men cannot help but take notice and even inquire as to its source? Let us be painfully honest. The western evangelical church has blended in nicely inside a culture of abject darkness and our lives are consumed with the temporal and by definition are blind to the eternal.

And in light of the desperate predicament in which we find ourselves, the revival we need is much more than more spiritual energy to be infused into a lifeless system. No, this is a revival which must return us literally back to the true faith. We need the heavens to rend and the Spirit of God to once again come into our lives like a mighty rushing river. I am not speaking about the dog and pony shows so often touted as the moving of the Holy Spirit. I speak of an authentic visitation of God’s presence which is so strong, so convicting, and so powerful that it strips us of us and remakes us into His image. And suddenly we no longer find within us the thirst and hunger for anything of this world, but our passion and yes our very life is Christ and Christ alone.

Everything, and I mean everything, will attempt to stop us from that kind of pursuit. Our spouses, our families, our jobs, our hobbies, and everything in this present world will join forces in order to keep us satisfied with the crumbs we now eat. Our focus will continue to be temporal and selfish even while we profess to be following Jesus. The church is not in disarray…it no longer exists. I mean the construct and practices and beliefs of the local gatherings have strayed so far as to be a product of a religious culture rather than the observable glory of the very body of Jesus Christ. It is a place where you may get some good advice and some interesting thoughts about streamlining your life in order to make this culture more advantageous to your existence.

But Jesus and His teachings have given way to an earthly religion which uses His name but rejects and alters His teachings. And although their doctrinal lips embrace Him their hearts are far from Him. And look around and listen. Do you hear church members wail in agony over the situation? Do preachers weep in their pulpits as they beg for a Holy Spirit revival which will crush us in repentance and yet bring forth that which will glorify our Great Redeemer? With the church so worldly, so carnal, so hedonistic, and so lethargic, where are the tear stained altars after fasting and praying at an all night gathering?

If you have dirt on your face you cannot see it until you look in a mirror or until a friend tells you. So unless we open our hearts to the voice of the Spirit and once again search the mirror of the Scriptures looking for Jesus and the teachings that we have come to ignore we cannot be cleansed. When the children of Israel were called out of Babylon and a remnant returned to Jerusalem they discovered a copy of the Torah which had been absent from their lives for many decades they wept and repented before the Lord their God. But more Jews stayed in Babylon because they had become friends with the system. They had raised children, built businesses, purchased homes, and even become friends with the heathen. So most Jews stayed in Babylon.

Today the church wallows in the system of Babylon. This western, capitalist, hedonist, and violent culture is antichrist and presents everything which is against the teachings and example of Jesus. But the church has slowly but surely embraced it and treacherously incorporated it into the faith. What an adulterous generation! How have we accepted a fraud and become content with the periphery of Scripture and not the glowing glory of seeing and embracing and seeking and following the Lord Jesus? It has become a monstrous betrayal of the Son of God driven by the spirit of Judas and not the Spirit of God!

There is a glory and a fresh and all consuming revelation of Jesus that can be found if we are so hungry for it we will not be turned away. If we are willing to sacrifice our time and make that time a relentless prayer time that pursues His face with repentance and self denial then we can find this incomparable treasure. Are we desperate? Are we so thirsty for living water that we cannot be denied? But if we can find the slightest contentment here in this world then the treasure only found in Him will remain buried to our souls.

There have been many, many false revivals. But that does not negate our need for the authentic. In fact, you and I can experience a personal revival even if everyone else is still going through the same redundant motions. All of us are indictable to our God. Are our ears still open and can we still hear the calling of the Spirit? If we have acquired a taste for the leeks and garlic of Egypt then the manna from heaven will never be ours.


Cherie c. said...

Fresh revelation of Jesus? A resounding Yes!

I had written a longer post, but I erased it. With great respect there are parts of your post I agree with and parts I do not. Please note my agreement or disagreement is not based upon my own understanding but the understanding I get from the Word of God.

Please do not misunderstand, not from a word from God, but the Word of God.

May the peace of our Lord Jesus Christ as only He can give be with you this day.

your sister in Christ Jesus,
Cherie c.

Anonymous said...

Acts 2:16 But this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:

I believe we are in the last days. The time for the return of Jesus is short. So I can see where Pastor Rick is coming from in this article. How do we know what God has planned for us to do in the way of bringing many more into the Kingdom of God. That last verse, :21, sounds to me like Peter crying out, in a panicked voice, to Jesus, saying “Lord, save me”, just before he went completely under the waves. How many more are out there just waiting to hear someone tell them there is hope and salvation. That hope and salvation is Jesus.

Does a revival need to be tens, fifties, hundreds or thousands coming to Jesus for salvation? Or, could it be one at a time and still be a revival? If one lost and dying person repents and is revived by the blood of Jesus, in a day, that would make it a revival. I know for myself that I do not want to wait around just thinking about starting a revival, God just may raise up one the rocks in my yard to preach the Gospel. I really don’t want to see that!


P.S. Not the same Joel as in the O.T. :)'

Cherie c. said...

It was the last days during the ministry of the Apostles. What prophesy is there when we already know how it all ends, and where we are in God's time table?

I just don't get it. And it breaks my heart to see so many versions of God's Word today. Denominations. They are no where to be found in Scripture, yet we have them today. We have churches mentioned in the Word of God, but they are the same names as the city in which they dwell.

I sent Chris Roseborough an email asking him why there are denominations, and where in Scripture they would be mentioned. Since he is a big proponent of Sola Scriptura and since he calls himself a confessional Lutheran. I am also Sola Scriptura, but I have no denominational ties. He has not emailed me back. He did mention that he is more likely to see a question on his facebook page, but it is not worth it to me to go back to facebook when I left it two years ago due to the awful content. So I guess my question will go unanswered. I will pray on this too. Even so, come, Lord Jesus.

And I thought a revival is with many people not just one. And Joel, if a rock speaks to you run.

your sister in Christ Jesus,
Cherie c.

Chris Baumgart said...

There has been a few times in the last 34 years of my walk with God, that I can say I went through a personal revival where the focus was on me. Breaking up my fallow ground. I used Finney's writings on just that, "Breaking Up Your Fallow Ground". It made me look at my sins of commission and sins of omission. It was so that I went to visit some people I felt I had wronged through word or deed to ask for forgiveness. I even ended doing some freelance graphic design to pay restitution to a family that my friends and I had stolen a water pump from that they were using to drain their flooded yard, we were going to use the motor off the pump to build a race cart I think... In my prayers during this time there were several things that haunted me, that I actually was interacting with these same people on occasion with these secrets of earlier betrayal, before I had become a born again Christian. So they were still near by, I could go to them, ask for their forgiveness using the testimony of Christ and the changes he was making to my heart. Being honest with them. They all were very surprised, they all forgave me. And I truly believe God's Love ruled those moments. I am not sure if their lives were changed just then, but maybe the Lord would plant seeds that would multiply later in their lives...pertaining to their salvation. I do know for me, I was no longer haunted and experienced such a freedom that all all things "gospel" felt fresh, renewed and my faith and hope were enlarged. Now in my walk if I have been clumsy through pride offending someone, I have learned to go straight back to them and ask their forgiveness. The Holy Spirit keeping bitterness, strife, delusion from my heart, my mind. I may have not been able to do all that I wanted then, certain folks had moved away... But my heart was changed for the better. Revived.

Cherie c. said...

Amen Chris! Thank you for sharing and sharing your Joy!

your sister in Christ Jesus,
Cherie c.

Anonymous said...

There's a verse in Isaiah, "where there is no vision, the people perish". I think the churches prohibited the saints from knowing what their mission was, as christians. They were preached to about personal repentence and how to avoid sin; I ask myself a lot, is that all the Lord's Church needs to do? Should we have been commissionned to go out, every one of us? The ministry wanted to keep the commissioning to themselves and some did for personal gain and profit. If we had followed that system throughout the centuries, we wouldn't be sitting in pews today. But, the Lord knew how the church system would fail, and despite that, still saves us, praise His Name. He knew that corrupt minds would hijack His church. He allowed men to make their choices and we are stuck now with churchianity. If we had obeyed the great commission and applied it to our lives, and lived as the early church, things would be muh different.

The great commission: Matt. 28: 18 - "And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, "All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Amen.

This verse has always been there since Jesus came to earth and declared this, and anyone can spin whatever they want from it. But He said it, He commanded it, and we can try to interpret it in a way which befits our culture. That doesn't mean that we're right. I really believe we dropped the ball, but God, in His mercy and forgiveness, still offers grace and eternal life.


Anonymous said...

There's personal revival and there's church revival. And the church has fallen away, so now can we expect it to return to the ways it once was? I don't know, but, as long as I live in this culture, it's going to be like a camel going through the eye of a needle to see a great revival sweep our area like those great ones.

Ephesians 4:11 - "And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelsts,and some pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come to the unity of faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, but speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head - Christ - from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does it's share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love".

If we don't live together, and commune and fellowship, how can we achieve this?


Cherie c. said...


Dear sister when we quote the Word out of context or not read the whole verse, we can error.

Proverbs 29:18 Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.

This has nothing to do with a vision as you are using it. It has to do with how they view the law. It is Old Testament and it is referring to Israel.

This is what is happening throughout the visible church. They either twist Scripture, take it out of context, read into it instead of getting out of it what exactly it says. Or, which is the biggest issue is not completing the entire verse or verses that give you the whole of the Word.

Matthew 28:18
17 And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted.

18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:

20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

He was talking to the Apostles here. We need to take the Word in context J. This command was not given to us at this time, it was given to the twelve. We do likewise as we are taught through His Word, but not as you are inferring. Context, context, context. We are not the Apostles. We are the church, body of Christ in the end times. That is why we have Pastor/Teachers so they can continue as they are taught. But not like it was in the early church. We have the Word of God today. The early church did not.

Isaiah 28:18 does not say anything about vision.

Ephesians 4 I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called,

2 With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love;

3 Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

4 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;

5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism,

6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.

7 But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.

8 Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.

9 (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?

10 He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.)

11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;

12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:

end of part 1

Cherie c. said...

part 2:

Jesus was giving out commissions. Different people in the early church were given different jobs to do: apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;

Ephesians 4:8 and gave gifts unto men.

He gave some, He gave gifts unto men. Not to women. 4:11 "And He gave some..... Some not all, and certainly not us today.

Only to those in the early church for, Ephesians 4:12 - for the perfecting of the saints.

Please, please to all my brothers and sisters, please read the Word in its entirety and not carve out a verse here and there, or try to repeat a portion of Scripture that you cannot remember, and wind up just writing it incorrectly. It is very dangerous to do so. If I am not sure of how a scripture goes, or to make sure I am remembering it correctly, I go to Bible Gateway (while I can) and check the Word to see if I am dividing it correctly. We do not want to give error to someone who is reading what we write.

J, I am just trying to show you the correct Scriptures in context vs. how you are using them, and dear sister, it is not correct. We, today, are not the "some". Women today, are not to preach to men anywhere especially in church. Ministry is only for Christian men. They are responsible for feeding the sheep (women too). I know what some will say to what I write, "out of touch with today's world" and the church." Praise God for that!

Will how and what we choose to believe count against us when we stand before Jesus? T believe it will. But, I do not know except for what He said. So as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord. And how He said it without taking it out of context or putting into it stuff that doesn't belong there.

I stepped away for a few minutes before I finished this comment because I got angry about how people seem to constantly take God's Word out of context, quote it wrong or just plain twist it to satisfy their own understanding and not caring how it affects others. I followed the following Scripture:

Ephesians 4:26
Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:

After I reconciled this I wrote what I wrote.

I am only trying to help. The other thing I can do is pray.

Revival, this word, I have not yet found in the Word. I am beginning to think it is man made and therefore we get its meaning wrong. The root word for revival is revive. There is no way that the church is dead. We need not revive what is already alive in Christ! If this is the spiritual meaning of "raising the dead" then I would agree there. Those without Christ are dead. So if a Revival will help raise the dead, then let the praying begin.

love to all my brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus,
Cherie c.

Anonymous said...

I see things as Jackie does on this matter and find Cherie's understanding of Christ's words full of errors.

Cherie c. said...

To Anonymous:

How can you agree with something that had the wrong Scripture quoted? The verse Jackie quoted is not in Isaiah, so therefore I can only sumize that she is not understanding the Scripure correctly. Not only that, she only quoted part of the the verse which when that is done takes it out of context. I quoted the entire verse from Proverbs 28:18.

If I am in error, which could be the case, then please point out to me in Scripture, not your experience, where I am wrong.

And since you say I am in error, please show me your brotherly or sisterly love towards me and help me understand where I am incorrect.

I am always opened to correction. I do not claim to know everything except what I learn in Scripture. In all sincerity I am asking you to show me. I would also like to know who I am addressing.

Pastor Rick, I am also asking you to point out where I have error.

Because you may not agree with me, does not mean I'm incorrect/ in error. The verses I quoted, when taken in context are correct. But then you will have to forgive me for not looking for me or putting myself into the Scriptures, but looking for and seeing Jesus in them.

your sister in Christ Jesus,
Cherie c.

Anonymous said...

Proverbs 29:18. Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.

This is a general teaching applicable to all people at all times!

In this verse God is stressing the importance of keeping the law. He links our happiness to keeping the law. As we keep the law we find ourselves blessed by God with a vision that glorifies Him.

Cherie c. said...

Born again Christians Anonymous do not keep the law. We live by faith and are saved by Grace. We do not follow the law.

No, this verse was speaking to the people of Israel in the Old Testament. Not to us today. Or do I have to quote chapter and verse for almost all of Hebrews?


Cherie c.